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On ‎15‎/‎01‎/‎2019 at 5:37 AM, dikman said:

you've definitely got some hidden geeky nerd in you!

Not so hidden, I reckon! :lol:

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On 15/01/2019 at 7:37 AM, dikman said:

Brian, mate, you've definitely got some hidden geeky nerd in you!:lol:

Yeah I been starting to worry bout that a bit :wub:. In my defence I have to say this really has been one of the simplest and fun projects that I have ever done.

  I've been trying to rush through a couple of improvements to free up the 3D printer for some other jobs that are waiting. Since getting the laser I have found I need it to be running nearly non stop and the original design is only intended for hobby use and should not be run at full power for longer than 20 minutes or so. This has to be done by allowing the laser to cool for 5 to 10 minutes before starting again. I am guilty of going past this time way too much. Keeping the laser running cool is a big thing in how long that diode will last. Another factor is air assisted cutting will make it cut more efficiently and quicker. Keeping the smoke off of the diode lens is another big point to remember ass well. For cutting thick leathers requires multiple passes or you gets a lot of burning /cindering on the edges. Being able to drop the laser down on these passes at say a1mm at a time is also a great advantage. I have been able to just do a few passes around without a drop down adjustment but I am sure that is a pretty inefficient way to go.  Following is my answer to these problems and is what I am working on at the moment. The first thing to improve was the diode cooling  and I noticed that the 2.5 Watt Eleksmakers fan can not really get any air to blow down the sides of the cooling fins and the centre of the holding block is solid . See pictures -  


I concluded a larger cooling fan on the top was needed and therefore why not encase the block in a shroud and force the air down over the fins and then funnel that air to get some air assistance at the same time. Your only trying to burn stuff down there anyway!!! Here is the shroud part with some recesses for nuts to locate the laser block into place.


I decided to make the funnel part connect with magnets and forgot to take a separate picture of the print so I will show some a bit later. The next thing is to design a Z lift mechanism that does not takes up any of the cutting area. The only Z lift I could get come with the cost of a lot of the cutting area. This next part stays with shroud and has the holes for the guide rails.



Next shows the fit is good


Bolts screwed in and they work great


This pic shows the main body of the Z lift which will replace the acrylic piece that presently holds the laser body. Note I have mounted the fan and also a temperature gauge to the shroud section. Also note the button section that moves up and down on the thread is a tight fit into the hole on the slider attached now to the shroud. DSC04547_resize.JPG

This back picture shows the button has a recess to receive a nut that allows the Z movement.


This one shows the magnet attaching funnel. This is needed to allow ease of focussing if needed. With the Z lift that should be fairly rare I think. This also shows that the 5 Watt laser fits in to the shroud as well and the big bunch of heat sink and electrical looking stuff on the right is actually for the 5 watt laser.I am doing 2 shrouds to allow for quick change over whenever that may be required.


Although I have designed this to have a Z lift motor at the top which will allow manual movement with it, I have for now also made another piece that can clip into the top for manual adjustment. I have not ordered in the 3 axis power board thing yet and I am still waiting for the Nema 17 motor to come in as well.



So far everything seems to be testing alright and I hope to do some in place testing later on this week.

Thanks to all of you who come in with experience and advise and help to contribute. Brian



Edited by RockyAussie

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Brian, you have just proved, without a shadow of a doubt, that you are indeed a NERD!:lol:

Excellent job, I would think there is a market out there for such upgrade/mods, however given you also have a "day job" it's probably too much trouble to explore such an option. What's the LCD on the side for?

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1 hour ago, dikman said:

What's the LCD on the side for?

That is the temperature gauge. I got 4 of them out of China for about $3.00 each and they all look to be very accurate. I did a 15 minute test yesterday at full power in the standard without shroud mode and to my surprise it went from 30.7 degrees C up to 45.7 Degrees. I am hoping to see some results with the shroud and top fan sometime later this week. After I see how it all performs I will consider whether to make any up for sale I guess. Great thing about the printer is it keeps working while I carry on doing other work.:rockon:


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